The recently ended Christmas/Holiday 2005 sales season is returning some good numbers for retailers, well above figures that some thought would have been unattainable in light of the many hurricanes that wreaked disaster on parts of the U. S. this past year. With consumer sentiment good, early figures suggest that sales climbed at least 4% over last year’s figures with a number twice that amount also being mentioned. Still, the greatest increases have been in an area that has seen double digit growth for years: the internet. With sales climbing 30% over last year’s torrid rates, online shopping is here to stay…and growing bigger every year. Have you started your online site yet? If not, why not?
Brick and mortar retailers are discovering that in order to remain competitive, they must have an online presence too. No longer does your customer base have to be restricted to a one or two county area where you live. The internet provides a great way to expand that base to include your entire state, your country, or the world! For example, Wal-Mart not only sells well at the store level, but their online sales do very well too. If Wal-Mart can do it, you can too.
Isn’t an online presence expensive? No, thanks to web sites that are easy to upload and manage. Depending on the company you choose, the web hosting portion of managing a site is negligible. Hosting fees and annual domain registration should cost you less than $125. per year. The better hosts also have extra “somethings” to whet your appetite: like easy to download open source storefronts that can help you set up an online presence.
Speaking of storefronts, OS Commerce software continues to help make an online presence possible for many retailers. With easy to use [and free!] software, everything you sell in your store can be sold online or at least those specialty items with high mark ups, right? With OS Commerce, you can use your existing bankcard relationship to bring in the cash or you can use Paypal, whichever works best for you.
Yes, Holiday 2005 is one for the record books. If you missed out, do not despair…you can get your site ready in time for the Valentine’s Day crunch and begin reaping tremendous sales increases immediately!
Copyright 2006 - Matthew Keegan is The Article Writer who writes on a variety of topics including: advocacy, automobiles, aviation, business, Christian themes, family, news, product reviews, travel, writing, and more. Please visit Matt's blog for absolutely stunning and humorous writings from the master himself!